Re: futex atomic vs ordering constraints

From: Will Deacon
Date: Mon Sep 07 2015 - 05:30:40 EST

On Sat, Sep 05, 2015 at 06:53:02PM +0100, Peter Zijlstra wrote:
> On Wed, Sep 02, 2015 at 02:18:53PM -0700, Linus Torvalds wrote:
> > So I think we could possibly relax the requirements (and document this
> > very clearly) to say that the futex operation must be totally ordered
> > wrt any other _user_space_ accesses by that thread. I suspect a lot of
> > architectures can then say "we may be very weakly ordered, but kernel
> > entry/exit implies enough synchronization that we do not need any
> > futher memory barriers".
> Right, so before sending this email I actually spoke to Ralf about this
> option, and he said that this is not actually well defined for MIPS.
> But we could certainly document it such and let archs for which this is
> well documented (I would expect this to be most) choose that
> implementation.

Whilst a control-dependency + exception return forms a barrier of sorts
on arm/arm64, it's not required to be transitive [1], so I wouldn't be
comfortable making that relaxation on the futex path.


[1] See, for example, "ISA2+dmb+ctrlisb+dmb" at
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